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Napa Valley earthquake experience

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With the Napa Valley earthquake experience still fresh in people's minds, we decided to ask one resident what the whole traumatic event was like. (See this article on the cost of the damage)

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Here Suzie Rodriguez tells us in her own words. And as she says, it all reminds us to have our earthquake kits ready and easily available. While nobody can predict just when the next "big one" will strike, this latest one came close enough.

"I live about 3 blocks from Sonoma's historic Plaza -- maybe 10 miles from the American Canyon epicenter. The quake was strongly felt here, in neighboring Sonoma Valley. I usually have a ho-hum attitude about earthquakes, but Sunday was different. Before I even realized what was happening I had jumped from my bed and stretched out flat beside it. The house seemed to be violently pulled in two directions simultaneously, while being vigorously shaken. I could hear things falling from shelves and from the walls, and things seemed to be falling outside as well. I was absolutely certain that the ceiling would collapse and hoped the bed would absorb the impact.

Then, suddenly, it was over, leaving me without power...and feeling truly powerless, I might add. I am not easily frightened, but I'm not ashamed to admit to feeling that way on Sunday. Karen, my neighbor, says she felt similarly.

The good thing was that I heard from all sorts of people, checking to see if I was okay. So I caught up with old friends and got a lecture from my dad on maintaining an earthquake kit, which now seems like a good idea..."

Suzie Rodriguez is a freelance writer based in California's wine country. Visit her at

Follow Sheila on Twitter @Sheilamba


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